In-Sourcing Blog

Emoticons are not substitutes for genuine emotions

Today the Cloud rains data and there is no place to hide from the torrent of information, be it fatuous, inane, or profane. When the Internet was introduced, information was transmitted at the rate of 1,000 bits a second. Today the rate is 1 million bits a second. Caught in the swirl of an ever-growing sea of chatter and natter it’s become more important than ever before to communicate from the heart rather than a list of pictograms.

Sadly, what we call social media has morphed into a jargon that is decidedly antisocial and a great deal of discomfort has been caused to many relationships as a result. Hitting the ‘Send’ key does not relieve us of taking responsibility for delivering the communication and making certain that it is clearly understood and acknowledged as such.

It has been five years since I talked about the dangers of forgetting how to communicate on a meaningful basis and clearly the problem has worsened exponentially. Social networking has become so prominent in our daily lives we are accustomed to “talking” with each other via emails, tweets and texts as a matter of course. So much so there is a danger of no longer knowing how to connect face to face.

Can a Smiley Face replace a hug of joy?

Technology links people together but what of the essential elements of a true relationship? An icon is not a replacement for feelings of intimacy. It is doubtful that a 140-character tweet can truly express the depth of our love, our concern, our sadness.

People want to be heard. They want to be listened to, not with surface reactions but true depth of feeling. When we speak with emotion, allowing ourselves to reveal our vulnerability, the words flow with energy powerful enough to rekindle the inner spirit.

We are compelled to listen and to respond in kind with a full, open heart.